Friday, June 27, 2008


LA Animal Services is suggesting pet owners get their pets licensed and micro-chipped before the 4th of July. More animals are lost during the 4th of July celebrations than at any other time of the year. Loud noises from fireworks frighten animals due to their heightened senses of hearing, and they will do anything to escape the noise. This behavior is usually unpredictable and out of character, and it may include chewing through a leash, jumping through screens and glass windows, digging under a fence, jumping over a wall, bolting away from the owner, and running into traffic.

The good news is that there are many things you can do to help ensure your pet's protection. Just follow these six simple guidelines to make July 4th a great holiday for both of you!

· Don’t take your pet to fireworks displays. The explosions of the fireworks are loud to the human ear. Imagine how loud it sounds to your dog, who can hear sounds up to 60,000 cycles per second -- that's three times greater than the human ear can even register.

· Do not leave your pet in the car. With only hot air to breathe inside a car, your pet can suffer serious health effects, even death, in a few short minutes. Partially opened windows do not provide sufficient air, but do provide an opportunity for your pet to be stolen. This practice is also illegal in the state of California.

· Keep your pets indoors in a sheltered, quiet area. Some animals become destructive when frightened, so be sure you've removed any items your pet could destroy or may be harmful to your pet if chewed. Leave a television or radio playing at normal volume to keep him company while you're attending 4th of July picnics, parades, and other celebrations.

· If you know that your pet is seriously distressed by loud noises like thunder, consult with your veterinarian before July 4th for ways to help alleviate the fear and anxiety he or she will experience during fireworks displays.

· Never leave pets outside unattended, even in a fenced yard or on a chain. In their fear, pets who normally wouldn't leave the yard may escape and become lost, or become entangled in their chain, risking injury or death.

· Make sure your pets are wearing identification tags so that if they do become lost, they can be returned promptly. Animals found running at-large should be taken to the local animal care center, where they have the best chance of being reunited with their owners. Two forms of ID are always best when it comes to protecting your pet. If an individual finds your pet, the first thing he or she will look for is an ID tag. In LA, if your pet is taken to a shelter, he/she will be scanned for a microchip. LA Animal Services micro-chips pets for $25.